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Chinese billionaire convicted in UN bribery case

In this Oct. 26, 2015 photo, Chinese billionaire Ng Lap Seng waves to the media as he leaves federal court. AP NEW YORK — A Chinese billionaire who wanted to build a United Nations center in Macau and was accused of illegally paying hundreds of thousands of dollars to U.N. ambassadors to make it happen was convicted at his bribery trial on Thursday. The verdict was returned in Manhattan federal court against Ng Lap Seng, one of China’s richest men. Ng was convicted of bribery, conspiracy and money laundering charges. Acting…

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June Foray, voice of Rocky the Flying Squirrel, dead at 99

Actress June Foray, who gave voice to Rocky the Flying Squirrel and hundreds of other cartoon characters and was sometimes known as the “female Mel Blanc,” has died in a Los Angeles hospital. She was 99. Foray died Wednesday at West Hills Hospital in Los Angeles of cardiac arrest, but she had been in fragile health since a car accident two years ago, niece Robin Thaler said Thursday. Foray was the best-known woman among the voice performers who contributed so much to the classic cartoons of Warner Bros., Disney, Hanna-Barbera…

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Kansas Governor, a Staunch Conservative, Prepares to Step Down

In some respects, the position may be a return to an earlier version of Mr. Brownback’s political persona: During his time in the United States Senate, he was known chiefly as an articulate and well-mannered advocate for conservative social issues, like opposing abortion and human cloning, and for speaking out on issues of international human rights. Bob Vander Plaats, an evangelical activist in Iowa, said that when Mr. Brownback ran for president in 2008, he was not viewed then as the unbending fiscal warrior he turned out to be as…

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Andrew Paulson, Chess Impresario and Serial Entrepreneur, Dies at 58

Invited to Russia for a photo shoot in 1993, Mr. Paulson remained for 15 years. He enlisted local partners in publishing several periodicals: Afisha, a Russian entertainment and listings guide; Bolshoi Gorod, a free version of a Sunday newspaper supplement; and MIR, a monthly travel magazine. In 2006, a year after his publishing venture was acquired by a Russian company, he and Alexander Mamut, a billionaire Russian banker, founded SUP Media. The group became an online pioneer and bought LiveJournal, a social networking service. (It is still operating.) Mr. Paulson…

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Right and Left React to Trump’s Transgender Ban

_____ • Max Boot in Commentary: “This may be good politics, but it’s bad policy.” Mr. Boot argues that Mr. Trump’s tweets on the transgender issue are a way of deflecting “attention from the multiple crises besetting his presidency” and an attempt “to try to stay in the good graces of the religious right.” Moreover, he notes, the president’s announcement is conspicuously absent of details, “leaving it to someone else to work out the actual policy he just announced.” Read more » _____ From the Left • Gersh Kuntzman in…

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New leads announced in hunt for Kansas serial rapist

The campus of the University of Kansas Google Maps LAWRENCE, Kan. – Authorities believe they have linked a 2015 attempted sex assault to a serial rapist thought to have attacked 13 women from 2000 to 2008 in the Kansas college towns of Manhattan and Lawrence. At a joint news conference Thursday morning authorities discussed an ongoing investigation into the rapes that terrorized the Kansas State and University of Kansas campuses.  The Kansas attorney general’s office announced in 2009 that it was investigating the link between the attacks after the two…

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Skills Gap: Switching Careers Is Hard. It Doesn’t Have to Be.

For some whose jobs have disappeared — particularly those without college degrees who worked in jobs requiring routine, physical labor — it can be nearly impossible to find a stable, well-paying new one. These jobs are more isolated, in terms of skills, from the rest of the labor market. Extensive research has shown that there are fewer middle-skill jobs, and that some displaced workers never recover, especially if they live in communities that no longer have jobs similar to their old ones or they don’t have higher education. “They have…

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Skills Gap: Switching Careers Is Hard. It Doesn’t Have to Be.

For some whose jobs have disappeared — particularly those without college degrees who worked in jobs requiring routine, physical labor — it can be nearly impossible to find a stable, well-paying new one. These jobs are more isolated, in terms of skills, from the rest of the labor market. Extensive research has shown that there are fewer middle-skill jobs, and that some displaced workers never recover, especially if they live in communities that no longer have jobs similar to their old ones or they don’t have higher education. “They have…

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Books of The Times: ‘Dying: A Memoir’ Is a Bracing Illumination of Terminal Illness

Those who have the wherewithal to write about these questions usually have the wherewithal to think clearly about them. Taylor, who died in July of last year at the age of 61, is a firm believer in taking custody of her own death. She announces in her first sentence that she’s purchased a euthanasia drug over the internet from China. She soon adds that she’s joined the local chapter of Exit International in her home of Brisbane, Australia. “It might be any meeting of any common interest group, a bowls…

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Slain Green Beret’s father believes Jordanian killer did not act alone

The father of one of three U.S. Army Green Berets killed in cold blood by a Jordanian soldier said he does not believe the shooter acted alone, calling the murders an “assassination” that may have been ordered by someone else. He acknowledged his suspicions might never be proven, but he said he thinks Jordan is engaged in a cover-up. “I don’t trust the Jordanians,” said Brian McEnroe, whose son Staff Sgt. Kevin J. McEnroe was killed when a Jordanian security guard shot him at point-blank range on Nov. 4, 2016,…

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